• If you are teaching kids karate and your classes are getting smaller and smaller, it's time to take a good long look at what you are teaching your kids! The last thing you want is to lose your teaching job because no one wants to attend your classes! Here are the top 5 martial arts drills and karate games that kids will go crazy for and that will keep them coming back for more!

    1. CATCH YOUR TAIL - This game is easy and geared towards the very young student. It encourages agility and speed and laughter. Choose two students; one to be the head of the tiger and one to be the tail. Take a karate belt and tie it to the back of the belt of the "tail" student. Set your watch for 30 seconds and have the tiger head try to catch his tail. I've found this is a favorite when teaching kids karate.

    2. THE CIRCLE OF DOOM - Get all kids into a circle with everyone spread out with both arms stretched out between them, far enough apart to not touch the kid next to them. Everybody settles into a horse stance with hands at hips, fists closed.

    The instructor stands in the centre of the circle and slowly turns looking at each kid as you face them. When you are ready perform an attack against one of the kids so that they can do the block or counter that you have been teaching them.

    As soon as their technique is finished move towards another kid on the outside circle and throw the same or a different attack for them to practice against. Don't choose your victims in any order, just turn randomly and pick one out to approach.

    When first teaching this, start your attacks slowly and tell them at the start of the game which attacks you will throw. Start with only 2-3 different attacks, as the kids become more comfortable with this game you can increase the number of attacks, the speed and the intensity of the contact you give and receive.

    3. HORSE AND SNAKE RELAY - Students form two equal teams of three or more. Start and finish lines are marked 30-60 feet apart. The teams line up one behind the other spaced a couple of feet apart standing in a deep horse stance.

    The student at the end of the line yells "Snake", drops to the floor and crawls like a snake through the others legs until they are at the front of the line, they stand up in a deep horse stance and yell "Horse" which signals the student at the end of the line to do the same. Students continue crawling up the line until the whole team has passed the finish line.

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  • Are you craving to gift someone with something more than ordinary? The right answer to this would be charm bracelets that are vintage. There is no doubt that the receiver of such a gift would love it very much and maybe, would think of starting a new collection. A vintage charm bracelet would be an ideal gift to the ones that deserve nice gift. You never have to worry about the fashion of the bracelet as it never gets outdated.

    You can customize the vintage charms and bracelets according to your preferred style and this makes a good thing about them. A wide range of selections is available for you such as gold charms, silver charms, antique charms, gem charms and many more. You can purchase charms at stores that sell great vintage charm collection as charms make very good personalized gifts.

    Vintage charm bracelets can also be bought at online retailers. Teenagers can go for starter bracelets as they less expensive and very easy to maintain. A variety of stylish and high quality vintage charms and bracelets sporting excellent artistry are offered by online stores. These charms are often available in gold, 14k yellow and white gold, sterling silver and many more. You also choose from many different themes. Number of themes is available which will help you in immortalizing the special moments of your life. Ladies can benefit from the famous designs that are available such as flowers, tiara, heart charms and many others. You can even find them that will be appropriate for kids in cute shapes, which will be sure to adorn any outfit your child wears.

    You can also see some individuals on eBay who sell many different items. Some of the sellers sell charm bracelets that are vintage. You can signup for free in the site and fill in all the details yourself. All major credit cards and PayPal is accepted by them. You won't have hard time hunting for the vintage charm that you need, all you need to do is to enter the specific item name in the search bar and search for it. No sooner do you enter the name than a list and pictures of the various items for sale is presented before you. Ensure that the sellers have a positive feedback and high ratings when buying vintage bracelet and charms. If needed, you can also take a glance at their profile for more information.

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  • Since starting my handcrafted jewelry business , I've displayed my items at many craft shows, fairs, festivals, home jewelry parties, etc. I often have a show two or three days a week. I have picked up many display ideas along the way. I have, also, had other vendors incorporate my ideas into their own displays.

    One of the most important things to remember, is that you want your display to be appealing to the customer. Your jewelry or craft may be beautiful, however, that won't matter if the display doesn't look enticing enough for the potential customer to come take a look.

    When it comes to jewelry, I find organization of items is very important. I have seen displays in which other jewelry designers have no particular organization in there presentation. That is their choice. I have had MANY customers comment on how much easier and quicker it is to find what they're looking for when a display is organized.

    Here are some tips and ideas for displaying jewelry items:

    TIP #1:

    -Display jewelry sets together. For instance, I display my chakra jewelry together on one mirror.

    TIP #2:

    - Display jewelry pieces for each category (ex. necklaces, bracelets, earrings, etc.) in the same general area. It will be easier for your customers to locate specific items.

    TIP #3:

    - Organize bracelets by style, gemstone, color, etc. Whatever seems best for you. I separate my bracelet displays by gemstones. For example: I may have quartz, jade and carnelian bracelets on one display, my awareness bracelets on another, and so on.

    TIP #4:

    - Earring displays are personal preference. I have seen some designers display their earrings on hanging displays without an earring card, some prefer to hang them on a board display or earring rack, others use a rotating display. I use a rotating earring rack, as it takes up less space and I am able to display over 100 pairs of earrings. I use black flock earring cards to hang my earrings on and I include rubber earring backs with my earrings. This helps to keep the earrings in place on the card and offers the customer an added bonus to the earrings .

    TIP #5:

    -Be creative when displaying your jewelry pieces. I use black velvet and white leatherette jewelry displays, beveled mirrors and wire jewelry holders. Mirrors are a great way to display your jewelry-they are simple, inexpensive and elegant! I use them to display my featured pieces and jewelry sets. Beveled mirrors can be purchased in a variety of sizes at your local craft store or jewelry supplier.

    TIP #6:

    - It is not recommended to use flat displays. A lot of shows will not accept a vendor if they have a flat table display. It's just not attractive! It is also recommended to have more than one tier in your display. I use the shelf from an old computer desk. I cover it with a piece of black velvet material and sit it on the back center of my table. It is perfect for displaying my business sign, a few necklace stands and smaller pieces of jewelry.

    TIP #7:

    -Cover your table! What colors you choose are up to you. However, if you choose a pattern that is too "busy", it may take away from your jewelry. I use black tablecloths when displaying my jewelry. To accent the black color, I use runners or large fabric table napkins in the colors of the season. I'll use rust colors in the fall, red and green in the winter..you get the idea. I also, display inexpensive "props" on my table. I use small wood pumpkins, small candles, clip on ornaments, etc. Make your table appealing to the buyer!

    TIP #8:

    - Include a business card display on your table. This will promote your business and lead to repeat customers.


    -Make signs. I use tent cards to make it easier for customers to find what they're looking for. I design my own tent cards on the computer using tent card sheets or card stock. I then cut them to the size I want. I label each of my categories with a tent card. For example: "Awareness Bracelets","Men's Jewelry","Children's Jewelry", "Anklets". I also make tent cards labeled with my services. For example: "Custom Orders Available", "Host a Jewelry Party", "Bracelet Lengths Can be Adjusted".

    TIP #10

    -Make sure you have a business sign. Promote, promote, promote! Make or purchase a sign with your business name, logo and/or description. I have an 8" x 10" sign on my table display ( I designed and printed my own sign out on the computer and put it into a picture frame) and I also have a vinyl sign that hangs in front of my table. If you're interested in a vinyl sign, you can make your own using a vinyl sign kit (available in craft stores) or you can purchase one from a sign company.

    It's best to make your display neat and professional, and let your personality reflect on it.

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  • These easy kids crafts projects are designed using recyclable items and other materials you would normally find around your house. So the next time you hear "I'm b-o-o-o-ored," whip a few things out of your cupboards and let the fun begin!

    Glimmer Paints

    A puffy, glossy paint that sparkles when dry.


        cup salt
        cup all-purpose flour
        cup water
        food coloring

    Mix salt, flour, and water. The mixture should be about the consistency of pudding. Add food coloring until the desired shade is reached, then use a funnel to transfer the paint to a squeeze bottle. You can also transfer the paints to ziplock bags, then snip off one tiny corner of each bag,

    Use these paints on heavy paper (cut a paper bag apart into one big sheet) and allow paintings to air-dry overnight.

    Store leftover paints in the refrigerator in airtight containers for up to three days stir or shake before using.

    Beautiful Butterflies


        pipe cleaners (assorted colors)
        coffee filters (large size)
        water-based markers
        small spray bottle filled with water (optional)

    Give each child a coffee filter and have them color on it with markers.

    Hold up the coffee filter, and spray with water or dip fingers in water and shake them at the coffee filter. Watch as the colors spread and run together.

    Once the filter is dry, bunch it in the middle and wrap a pipe cleaner around it. Make sure you leave a little extra pipe cleaner to make two antennas.

    Secret Pictures

    With the stub of a white candle or a white crayon, draw a picture, pressing hard. Your picture will be invisible until you paint over it with a watercolor wash.

    Put a few drops of water on your chosen watercolor. While the paint is getting soft, use your brush and clean water to stroke across your paper to make it completely wet. Be careful not to scrub the paper.

    Load your paintbrush with color and, starting at the top, stroke from one edge of the paper across to the other, all the way. Continue loading and stroking until the whole paper is covered with paint.

    Look at your drawing now. Was it a success? Did you press hard enough with the crayon or wax to make the lines show through the paint? Was your paint dark enough so that the lines were clearly visible?

    Bread Art


        white bread
        food coloring
        1 drinking cup for each color
        new or very clean paintbrush

    Pour a small amount of milk into each cup. Add a few drops of food coloring to the cups (a different color in each cup).

    Using a paintbrush, paint designs or pictures onto the bread. Don't soak the bread. Use just enough "paint" for the picture to show. Now toast the bread for edible art!

    Crystal Rock Garden


        alum (found in the spice section of supermarkets)
        clear glass bowl
        clean rocks and pebbles

    Bring cup of water to a boil. Add 2 ounces of alum, stirring until the alum is dissolved.

    Pour the solution into a clear glass bowl half filled with assorted clean rocks and pebbles. Within hours you should be able to see alum crystals forming as glasslike squares. Within several days you should have a number of crystals to look at.

    Lifesaver "Glass"

    Cover cookie sheet with aluminum foil. Sort several rolls of clear Lifesavers candies by color into plastic bags, and crush with a rolling pin or roll a bottle over them.

    Using refrigerated sugar cookie dough, have kids roll balls of dough into ropes, then shape the ropes into shapes that are hollow in the middle (circle, triangle, heart, etc.). Place on cookie sheet and fill in blank spaces with crushed candies. Bake 8 to 10 minutes at 375 degrees. When completely cool, peel off aluminum foil. These are called "stained glass" cookies.

    If you wish to hang your ornaments, after removing from oven and while the "glass" is still warm, push a straw into the "glass" to make a hole which you can string a ribbon through after the ornament cools.

    Remove the straw when the cookies are cool enough to touch but not completely hardened.

    Foil Family

    Unlike your average tin men, these foil characters have plenty of heart. All it takes is a pinch here and there to make them strike any pose you like.

    Tear a rectangular sheet (about 10 by 15 inches) from a roll of aluminum foil.

    Make two cuts down from the top of the sheet and one cut up from the bottom. (For a pet, make two cuts up from the bottom.)

    Scrunch together the center of the sheet to form a torso. Pinch and mold the upper corners into arms, and the lower corners into legs and feet. Shape the upper midsection into a head and neck. (The lower midsection makes the tail of the pet.)

    Plastic Berry Baskets

    There are lots of fun things you can do with those green plastic baskets that strawberries and other berries come in.

    Bubble Blower: Fill a bucket with water and a squirt of two of liquid soap. Dip bottom of basket into the soap solution and wave slowly in the air to make hundreds of tiny bubbles.

    Crazy Paint: Press the bottom of the basket into one or more colors of paint. Using the basket like a stamp, press it onto fabric, or a home made book cover, or furniture such as a table, stool or chair.

    Snowflakes: Cut out the bottom of the basket. Use as is or make extra snips to get your desired shape. Dip in glue, dip in glitter and attach a hanger.

    Doll Houses: Cut up to make fencing, lattice, garden arbors

    Snowflakes: Cut away the sides of the basket so that you have 3 flat sections of basket material. Use scissors to snip away portions of the basket to get your desired shape. Dip in glue, dip in glitter and attach ribbon or string to hang your snowflake.

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  • If you've been looking to increase your wire wrapping skills as of late, Weave, Wrap Coil by Jodi Bombadier is the right book for you. This book, Creating Artisan Jewelry: Weave, Wrap, Coil will surely offer an element of sophistication and grace to any wire wrapper's jewelry. The author can also help teach you how to do simple wire weaving, an added and unexpected bonus found in this book.

    Jodi starts out explaining her own path into wire wrapping and what factors played a part in her draw to wire jewelry. After reading the next section, Fundamentals of Wire, you'll be able to move onto the books' projects easily. Next, Jodi explains the very few simple tools you'll need to get yourself started making wire jewelry. If you want to learn how to weave wire, the Techniques section will provide you with five simple and easy weaving patterns to choose from. For anyone wanting to enhance their wire working skills, this section is a real bonus to have included.

    Next is where the book starts to get into its' actual projects. Almost anyone could find a project here to match and/or stretch their own skill levels. The beginner projects total nine and has three earrings, one pendant, two rings, two bracelets and a basket weave cuff included. This cuff is particularly appealing. While a simple project, it's gracefully designed and quite elegant. See the end wires to appreciate her lovely design sense and how beautifully she finishes the ends off.

    Nine more interesting (and some challenging) projects can be found in the Intermediate projects section. A diverse, varied selection of projects is located here as well.

    A pleasing assortment of advanced projects intended for the more skilled or experienced art wire jeweler is available in the last section of Creating Artisan Jewelry: Weave, Wrap, Coil. There are a total of seven projects in this section: rings, bracelets, pendants and one cuff. If you've ever wanted to learn simple ways to weave wire, you'll be pleased to find those projects included here, too.

    Weave, Wrap, Coil: Creating Artisan Jewelry by Jodi Bombadier is an impressive book with its twenty-five projects for all levels of skill and interest. You'll find many of the book's projects having twenty or more step-by-step instructions and you'll also find that there are very detailed illustrations in this book. The layout of the book is quite well done in addition. Adding to the fact that this book has numerous excellent projects, Jodi adds her beautiful, elegant and sophisticated design sensibilities to a craft that often lacks exactly that. This is a very nicely done book indeed.

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